(1/5/04 10:26 am)
It's about a year since I last posted. Hope you are all well.
I just read a book on the Cottingley fairies. What interested me was not so much wether the photo's were fake or not but that so many people actually believed they were true. Joe Cooper, who wrote the book was (is?) certainly a believer.
So here is my question. How many people believe in fairies today? I do not mean belief in some sort of psychological principle or Jungian thingamajig, I mean belief in the physical reality of fairies at the bottom of your garden.
Has anybody out there seen any lately?
Have a fantastic 2004!
(1/5/04 1:48 pm)
There is a Yahoo group for Brian Froud's "Faeries' Oracle" (written by Jessica MacBeth). They are, for the most part, 'true believers'.
You can also read about "The Faeries' Oracle" on the Froud site: www.worldoffroud.com
Janet Bord has written a book called: "Fairies: Real Encounters with Little People."
And Dora Van Gelder Kunz's: "The Real World of Fairies: A First-Person Account" may also be of interest ot you.
(1/7/04 11:36 pm)
Froud's site is a good one|
I go there from time to time. I am a believer (I don't like that term, actually)for many reasons that I won't get into here because people have a tendency to think that anyone who believes in faeries, ghosts, or UFOs or bigfoot as insane. From everything I've researched on the phenomena of the "others" I think it is irrational to think they don't exist in one form or another, whether you want to call them faeries, aliens, or spirits.
Bord's book is one of the few that tries to tackle the subject seriously, but it contains some wishful thinking as well. The video "The Faery Faith" available on Froud's website is perhaps the best documentary I've seen on the subject, although not conclusive, it offers at least two very convincing, if not chilling, arguements.
The Contingley faerie incident is interesting because it is so obviously a fake, and one copied by others at the time, and that people believed it to be real is a sign of our desperate wish to touch the other. What is interesting about the history of the incident is this: the hoax was perpetrated by two older children having been given the idea by their younger sister, who maintained that she did indeed see the faeries, and insisted on it years later. Generally it is said they all admitted to a hoax as old women, but this part is generally overlooked. What is also said, in a very nonchalant manner, was that all but one photo was fake. That is quite an amazing comment coming from those who just admitted to a hoax! One easy to dismiss as humor on the part of the girls, however the younger girl later said that one of the pictures indeed was real. I went back and studied all the photos, and there is one, evidently the first one taken, of the girl sitting in a garden, and as you look at the picture, the faces and forms begin to form, many hard to see because they look so much like a part of their natural landscape. The thing that immediately struck me about this was how sophisticated it was compared to the cheaply done cut-outs from children's books and magazines used in the other photos. In a way, they looked a lot like some of the nature fey in many of Brian Froud's paintings. Not exactly, but similar - another words, real looking. We may never know about the authenticity of that one picture; that truth will forever remain a part of a little girl's knowledge, now a part of the past.
Anyway, that's my take on the subject. Belief denotes a "religious" faith in something. In my opinion it is or it isn't, and I think the evidence falls on the side of "is."